Thanks for answering my question and the link Chris!
I fiddled around with the Soft-15kHz and QuickRes programs yesterday for a couple of hours but couldn't get a stable picture on my arcade monitor. I tried all of the options and nothing seemed to work.
I decided that it was best to go with the ArcadeVGA card, so I ordered one yesterday. In the meantime, last night I replaced the motherboard in my PC with one that has a PCI-Express slot for the ArcadeVGA card. Hopefully this will resolve everything.
Hopefully the card will arrive as quickly as the other components from Ultrimarc (it only took about a week last time).
Alright so I received my ArcadeVGA card and popped it in the PC but I can't get a proper picture on my arcade monitor.
Here's what I've done so far - if anyone could provide some troubleshooting tips that would be greatly appreciated!
I purchased the J-Pac and ArcadeVGA (PCI-E) cards from www.ultimarc.com but I’m not able to get a proper picture on my arcade monitor (which is a Philips A48ABK05X).
My base cabinet for this project is the Blood Bros. game – info about it can be found here: http://www.arcade-history.com/?n=blo...=detail&id=291
How do I determine the refresh rate of this monitor?
When I first plugged my arcade monitor into the VGA port on the card (at the same time as my PC monitor was plugged into the DVI port), I did not get a picture on the arcade monitor at all. However, after installing the ArcadeVGA driver, I got a rolling picture on the arcade monitor but at the same time my PC monitor lost its picture. Is this how it should work?
Also, the SYNC OK LED on the J-pac card is off.
Sorry Suave, I don't remember having any problems like that with mine. I know it didn't output to the arcade monitor and computer monitor at the same time properly like you have already seen. Have you tried, just using the computer monitor at first so that you can get all the drivers installed. then try just the arcade monitor?
You can also try emailing Andy from Ultimarc and ask him. Or you can try posting at this forum
I've seen him on there as well.
Thank you for the further suggestions Chris. You are perfectly correct in saying that the ArcadeVGA card is not suppose to output a video to both the VGA and DVI outputs but mine does, until I install the driver. Then, only one of the outputs works at a time.
I contacted Andy from Ultimarc and he was very prompt to respond with some suggestions. The trouble is that nothing has worked yet. I do have one more thing to try though... in his last email he wrote:
"Have you tried adjusting the vertical hold control? Does this slow or stop the roll, or does it never lock? If it does slow but not lock then the V Sync signal is not getting through for some reason."
Appearantly I have to try to locate the manual for my monitor which should show how to do this. The guy that sold me the arcade machine didn't provide me with a key so I also have to drill out the lock in the back in order to get into the monitor compartment.
Hopefully I'll have some time to play around with it this weekend...
How to stop rolling picture on arcade monitor MAME
Alright, I've made some steps forward on this yesterday evening and I'm finally getting a picture on my arcade monitor
I fixed the rolling picture on the arcade monitor by adjusting the vertical and horizontal hold controls on the monitor, as suggested by Andy from Ultimarc. I also had to turn up the contrast and brightness controls to see the full picture. All of the controls (small dials) can be found on the circuit board at the back of the monitor. In my cabinet each dial was clearly labeled.
Now I can finally clearly see and navigate the Windows XP desktop on my arcade monitor.
I'm posting all of these details with the hope that they will help others who are building MAME arcades.
Next issue to resolve:
Although I can now see a picture on my arcade monitor, each time Windows XP starts the desktop is "split" horizontally on the screen. So every time I have to adjust the V-hold and V-position controls. Is there any way to get around this?
Also when I open up the MAME32 software and select any game the picture starts rolling again. I'm not sure if this happening because of my resolution settings (my Windows desktop is set to 1024x768 right now, and I only have the option to change it to 800x600 which doesn't show a picture at all). My understanding is that the desktop should be set to 640x480. Also, I will try installing the Hyperspin MAME front end as suggested by Chris earlier in this thread. Do you have any tips you could offer for me here Chris?
Last question: Which MAME emulator do you use Chris? The command prompt MAME or MAME32? Or something else entirely?
Here are a few thoughts. It's been a while since I configured mine so I might be missing a few things.
First of all, did you install all the drivers that came with the ArcadeVGA? If so, you should see a little Galaga icon in your system tray that should allow you to quickly change the resolution to several options (most importantly, low res options) I'm pretty sure 1024x768 is too high for your monitor to display it correctly. Mine is set to something like 320x240. You really can't navigate in windows properly, but I hook up a computer monitor to do windows type stuff. In fact, I recommend you get everything set up on a computer monitor first, then bring it over to your machine.
Second, there was a separate app that I had to download which looks through your list of games and creates an ini file for each game to tell the ArcadeVGA which resolution to use for that game. That's one of the real benefits of the ArcadeVGA is that it can play all the games in their native resolution. I can't remember what it is right now but I'll try to find it for you, I use a tutorial I found online somewhere.
Also, I am using Mame64 because I am running Windows 7 64 bit. Everything is set up with Hyperspin so that I run hyperspin and once I select a game, it will run the command line prompt needed to run Mame.
Again, if you were to get all this from me, it would already all be set up for you, you would just have to change it to point to your mame.exe file instead of Mame 64. I won't be much help to you in setting up Hyperspin because a friend of mine did all of that for me.
I hope some of this helps. let me know how it goes. I think the main thing is that you are running at too high a resolution.